Part 1 here
My rest day today so just a light Vinyasa Krama practice, mainly some of the Tadasana sequence leading into some back bends. Moved on to the key asanas, Utanasana, Paschimotasana, Maha mudra, Sarvangasana and Sirasana.
In Sirasana I wanted to work on the inverted Uddiyana bandha* I mentioned in Part 1. It took a couple of breathes to start getting the hang of it but it felt pretty good and I think I'll be doing this everyday for the next couple of weeks.
The belly doesn't seem to cave as much when you engage Uddiyana* upside down, but perhaps that's just me not having got the hang of it yet. I'm happy with this for now and more important is to be in better control of it.
So there's a video of this, if your a fan of watching paint dry of grass grow. I think you can see it get more pronounced as things go on. At the end of the video I bind a lotus and bring it down while trying to keep Uddiyana engaged, tricky, very tricky
After that I couldn't resist giving Karandavasana one go at least.
Again, hard to engage a strong Uddiyana while coming down but I think I had something going on and it did seem to give more control of the descent. I tried to engage it fully as I went back up again too. Better than yesterday and I seem to have my Chatuaranga exit back although my left hand slipped as I didn't have a towel on my mat.
Difficult to gauge how effective this is having been away from Karandavasana for three weeks, think this was my third since my knee improved. A good scientist would have got his Karanda back to it's best first before starting to explore all this.
Perhaps there's nothing to it anyway, just a hunch and some bits and pieces from Sharath that I'm putting together to see if it adds up to anything.
Bandha work is always good though whatever the reason.
*This is how I approach/experience the bandhas (taken from an earlier post). Towards the end of the exhale (2/3) I let myself become aware of the slight lifting sensation of moola bandha. I begin to focus on it and intensify it, drawing it up. As it gets as 'raised as it's going to get, uddiyana bandha has begun to become slightly activated, my lower abdomen drawing back towards my spine and up.
This next bit (uddiyana) is an added extra. At the end of the exhale I draw my abdomen all the way up creating a cave beneath my ribs .
here refers to the gentle drawing in of the abdomen up to the spine following the engaging of moola bandha.
Uddiyana refers to the more dramatic extension of Uddiyana bandha drawing the abdomen right in and up creating a cave as in 'Pond gesture' pose and as if in preparation for nauli kriya.
Picture: Krishnamacharya's uddiyana